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Women for Solar Electrification of Rural Villages

Thursday, 25 June 2015 13:26 Written by 
  • Location(s): Jordan
  • Type(s): Solution
  • Theme(s): Rural Development, Solar Energy, Women Empowerment
  • SDG(s): 5. Gender Equality, 7. Affordable and Clean Energy
  • Locations in the Arab States: Jordan
  • Types in the Arab States: Solution
  • Themes in the Arab States: Rural Development, Solar Energy, Women Empowerment
  • SDGs in the Arab States: 5. Gender Equality, 7. Affordable and Clean Energy

The project promotes women economic empowerment and poverty alleviation by educating rural women on assembly, installation, and maintenance of Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Systems and offering the eco-friendly form of energy use to local communities.

Through the set-up of a rural village training cooperative and a solar workshop run by the village women which produces and carries out maintenance of solar PV systems and providing trainings to other rural women the project contributes to: 

  • Providing a sustainable source of energy by training rural women on building solar PV systems.
  • Enhancing education for school students by offering a sustainable source of illumination.
  • Minimizing the country`s carbon footprint by using a renewable energy source.
  • Improving the standard of living for rural communities by introducing solar energy systems.
  • Encouraging young women and men to develop economic opportunities in rural and remote villages.

The idea of promoting the alternative source of energy through economic empowerment of rural women is based on expertise and experience of the Barefoot College (India), a non-governmental organization that has been providing basic services and solutions to problems in rural communities for more than 40 years, with the objective of making them self-sufficient and sustainable. For the solar electrification of villages, Barefoot College annually trains about 100 grandmothers from India and 80 grandmothers from international rural villages located in the least developed countries. The grandmothers complete a comprehensive 6 month solar engineering training program at Barefoot College campus in India where they learn how to light up solar home units, solar lamps, and charge controllers. Upon completion of training, the grandmothers return to their village to electrify up to 250 households with solar lighting units and assume the responsibility of repair and maintenance for a minimum of 5 years.

Cooperation between the Barefoot College and Friends of the Environment Society (Jordan) and efforts of the project led to achievement of the following outcomes:

  • A minimum of 8 women are trained in solar engineering in the rural village to be able to build and assemble a solar photovoltaic system for home use and transfer their knowledge and experience to their communities
  • 80 rural homes of local community members have been fitted with Solar PV light systems
  • The local cooperative provides a financial sustainable for local women income
  • Local funding for the project development is committed for the startup phase of the project
  • Reduce of local consumption of conventional electricity in the homes due to replacement with solar systems
  • A marketing strategy for products is developed and operationalized

Countries contributed to the implementation of the project offer their support to the developing countries that are in need to find a sustainable solution for poverty eradication, women empowerment and developing renewable energy sources.

Barefoot College (India), Friends of the Environment Society (Jordan)

Contact details: 
Tilonia, Ajmer District, Rajasthan 
Meagan Carnahan Fallone, Global Strategy & Development
Barefoot College, 
Tel: +1 646 781 4353
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Jordan Friends of Environment Society, Raouf Dabbas, Vice-President
Tel: + 962 79 5524024
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
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